Waiting to Start.

I lay here in this pitch-black hotel room staring at the ceiling. My mind is racing full of everything and nothing. I don’t know what to make of this feeling; anxiety plus excitement plus dread plus exhaustion plus every other feeling in the world. The last week has been exhausting. Saying goodbyes, packing, stressing out, and crying. 

 

I don’t know what to expect from this adventure abroad. Part of me is afraid to define expectations because I’m afraid those set expectations won’t happen and I will be disappointed. However, the other part is ready to define what I want this year to be for myself. 

 

I expect growth. 

 

I expect closure. 

 

I expect self-acceptance. 

 

I expect independence. 

 

It’s interesting to me when I reflect back on my previous European adventures the different states my mind, body, and soul were in at the time. 

 

The first time in the spring 2015 I had never left the country on my own before. I had traveled by myself but never anywhere outside of the US. I spent a total of 3 months abroad in Europe. I learned so many things about myself. I discovered how to get lost. I discovered how to take care of myself. I discovered myself in 9 different cities throughout Europe. 

 

The second time in the fall of 2016 I felt a little more aware of how to travel on my own. In September, I left Los Angeles for London after a family trip to Disneyland for my birthday. I wouldn’t realize until later how important that family trip to Disneyland truly was. There I was able to escape my abuser and be around those who loved me. I credit Disneyland with saving my life now. In London, I started to unravel. This was the first time since June of 2015 that I had truly been alone. I am not afraid to admit I had a complete mental breakdown in Europe in 2016. I did not enjoy this trip. I was sick, and I was completely alone. I look back on it now with the realization that this trip inadvertently ended up saving me from my abuser. 

 

Each time I’ve been to Europe I end up leaving with some form of renewed strength and growth. I have no doubt this trip, this year long adventure, will give me the same. 

 

I lay here in this pitch-black hotel room staring at the ceiling. My mind is racing full of everything and nothing. I don’t know what to make of this feeling; anxiety plus excitement plus dread plus exhaustion plus every other feeling in the world. However, I know I am ready for this adventure to begin.